Blocked Ears, Broken Covenant
Sovereign Lord, I wait before You, fixed on You, You alone. There is no other, my Lord and my God.
Consider: "He wakens me morning by morning, wakens my ear to listen like one being instructed" (Isa. 50:4). We fail to listen and obey at our peril!
How would you feel if a friend who promised you something casually broke his promise? This is how God felt toward Israel and Judah, who habitually broke their covenant (10). God had delivered them from slavery in Egypt, brought them to the Promised Land (5), and kept his promise. On the way, the people stood on Mount Gerizim and Mount Ebal to pronounce blessings (if they kept the covenant) and curses (otherwise). See Deuteronomy chapters 27 and 28.
God had endured the nation's repeated sins and idolatry. Under King Manasseh, Judah had sunk to its lowest. Still, God raised Josiah to turn it around. After Josiah, Jehoahaz brought the nation to its default position of idolatrous disobedience (10). Judah had as many false gods as towns (13). Worse, Jerusalem (of all places!) had altars to Baal in every street. This was it; the curses were to come in full force. There were no more good kings left. Dark days of judgment awaited the sinful nation.
The word "listen" is repeated. Judah had failed to listen to God (6,8,10). The people did not pay attention to the words of the covenant; Jeremiah is now called to bring the words to them (2,6). Because they deliberately and continuously refused to listen, it was now God's turn to shut his ears to their pleading (11,14). What a frightening and tragic situation! How about us today? Are we listening to God, paying attention to his Word and living idol-free lives? Having his Word is not enough; keeping his Word is essential. What about the church? Is it like Jerusalem, full of idols rather than God? Is the church guilty of embracing the idols of the world--money, power, pleasure and human wisdom? The Father points to Jesus and says to us: "Listen to him" (Matt. 17:5)!
Jesus said, "My sheep listen to my voice" (John 10:27). How well are you listening to him and paying attention to his words? What has he been telling you lately?
Loving Lord, forgive my partial attention to You. I long to see You, the giver of grace. I ask for an attentive attitude before You.
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